There are 145 million old £1 coins still in circulation.
The new pound coin, with its many sides, two colours and other anti-counterfeiting measures has been around since May 2017. The old round coin stopped being accepted in shops six months later.
At the time there were thought to be 500 million of the old coins in circulation, so the fact that two years on there are still 145 million out there is surprising. There’s a good chance many of them are lost forever, but a huge chunk of that £145 million pounds has to be just sitting in in our homes.
What to do if you have an old £1 coin
If you find an old quid, you won’t be able to use it any shops or businesses. And you won’t be able to exchange them for the new pound coins either.
But you will be able to pay them into accounts at banks, building societies. If you don’t have your bank near you, or it’s someone like First Direct with no branch, then you can also deposit old round pounds at the Post Office.
So if you track any down, then simply pop into your branch with your bank card and get it added to your balance. There’s a chance your bank could have a minimum number of coins to make a deposit
Before you do that, it’s worth a quick check on somewhere like eBay that you don’t have a rare version which could be worth a few quid more – though do take into account the fees you’ll have to pay if you do try to sell it.
What to do with old £5 and £10 notes
£1 coins aren’t the only change to our physical currency over the last few years. There’s already been a new £5 and £10 note, and the new £20 note is due in 2020. If you happen to find an old fiver or tenner then you can try your local bank too, and if they don’t accept it you can take it or send it via the post to the Bank Of England in London.
Where to look for old £1 coins
If you haven’t checked for the old coins (or notes), here are a few of the less obvious places you might have forgotten to check.
Your kid’s room
Soon after the old coins stopped being legal tender, my then seven-year old niece shared she had a small pot full of them that she was saving. In the end it turned out my dad (her granddad) had already switched them over to the new version. Great. But it shows that if you’ve got kids with a money box or small purse they could be hoarding some old coins.
Winter clothes and bags
If you change your wardrobe with the seasons, then there will be some clothes – particularly coats – you’ve not used for six or more months. Check the pockets and check the bottom of bags.
Occasional use bags
A bit like the winter clothes, you might have bags you rarely use. It could be a posh handbag or a small one for weddings and nights out. You might have a sports or gym bag that’s not been used all summer. Basically anything you’ve not used for a while but you might put cash in it!
Random change jars
We’ve got a couple of these at home and I tend to forget they are even there. Since I hate having loose change I tend to empty my wallet whenever I get some. This is usually onto random surfaces, which my wife then moves into a jar. It’s mainly pennies, but you could have a pound or two buried within.
Your glove compartment
If you’re like me you never have the right coins for a parking meter, and I know many people prepare for this by having a few quid hidden in the glove compartment.